Alice Nelson

Deep in snow

– Posted in: Weather

Up here in the U.P. we are still deep in snow, about 2-3 feet of it in my back yard. My windows are filled with plants - geraniums, aparagas ferns that were removed from planters and starts that need planting. Under lights in the basement are any number of ivy plants, also taken from client [...]

Update from the Upper Peninsula

– Posted in: Plant info, Weather

First, some more plants in lawns: tansy, yarrow, prickly lettuce and a green flowered knotweed. Also, in Peterson's Field Guide to Wildflowers, pigweed and lamb's quarters are interchangeable common names. That's the joy of common names. The scientific name is Chenopodium album. We're still having a slow year. Usually the leaves are well on their [...]

More lawn “plants”

– Posted in: Miscellaneous

Here are some additional plants in our lawns that are not lawns. Some I had forgotten and some I hadn't identified. Wild chamomile (pineapple plant), lambs quarters or pig weed (can be cookied and eaten;tastes like spinach), chickweed, rose mallow, butter and eggs, and sand spurrey. There are probably more!

Really coldclimate

– Posted in: Miscellaneous

Ever been to a county fair where the only tomato entries were green tomatoes? Noone had ripe ones up here. I'm not sure mine will ever get riipe. We're due for another cold spell. And some of the potatoes at the fair were the size of golf balls. My flowers are blooming beautifully, though! And [...]

Tools of choice

– Posted in: Miscellaneous

What's your favorite tool? I've found that I can't garden without a garden fork. It is absolutely indispensable. It goes into the ground much more easily than a spade or shovel, though a small spade is handy for digging out plants for trans-planting. Now I've found a hand fork is almost as indispensable. Mixing soil, [...]


– Posted in: What's up/blooming

If you think you live in a cold climate, you should live here. We are at least 2 weeks behind our usual temp. My late tulips are still in bloom, and irises are just beginning to open, with peonies in tight bud. Last night it was in the 40's. We are also 4 inches above [...]

Roses in the U.P.

– Posted in: What's up/blooming

This is in the "what's up" category. Out of eleven rose bushes planted (eight last year) all but one made it through our U.P. winter - zone 4 - and are leafing out nicely. John Cabot and William Baffin are climbers that can be left on the trellis, White Meidiland and Fire Meidiland are ground [...]

Really cold

– Posted in: Weather

It seems here in the U.P. it can't get warm. Had a couple of days in the 60's, but it looks like next week will be in the 50's again with 40's at night. Well, it is a nice long season for the tulips which are just beginning to blossom, and the daffodils are still [...]

Cold Spring

– Posted in: What's up/blooming

Well, I did get my walls o' water up, 6 of them, but haven't put the tomato plants in yet. Still down to the 30's here at night in the U.P. We put up a small collapsible greenhouse, and I've started putting my geraniums out, as well as the peonies on the front porch. I [...]


– Posted in: Weather

Here we go again. It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas - about an inch of snow, not much by U.P. standards, but more than we like in April. It won't hurt the bulbs that are on their way up (about 2-3 inches). Got my seedlings that I planted in vermiculite pricked out [...]